The Eastern Women’s tennis team is looking to gain more momentum from this weekend’s meet against Saint Louis University. The team is coming off of a dominant start to their season last weekend, defeating Judson University and Olivet Nazarene University.
Director of tennis Chris Tolson has been stressing to his players the importance of doubles matches from last weekend’s matches, emphasizing to his players to not only improve in doubles play, but instructing them to strike first and be aggressive.“We are going to just keep putting our trust in the work our coaches have us doing, and continue to have confidence in the belief that we can beat any school out there,” sophomore Rachel Papavasilopoulos said.
Papavasilopoulos started off last weekend in doubles with senior Srishti Slaria by defeating Judson University’s pair 8-3. Papavasilopoulos plans to stick with the aggressive style of play and continue to improve playing alongside Slaria.
Tolson’s words were heard by each player. Wanting them to not only set the tone, but improve on movement and approaching the ball in doubles play to help win games.
“This weekend, I’m hoping to improve my serve and volleys for this weekend’s doubles match,” sophomore Claire Martin said. “I think if the team and I can incorporate what we’ve done in practice into our matches, we’ll see some improvement and be a strong force in doubles.”
Martin played strong last weekend, helping win two doubles matches, and she won both of her individual matches in four 6-0 sets. She also clinched the second team match against Olivet Nazarene by winning her second individual match of the weekend..
“I think we need to bring a lot of energy right off the bat. We shouldn’t wait for the other team to start,” Martin said. “We need to come ready to play and excited to be given the chance to play against SLU.”The women’s tennis team ended its fall season with a combined 26-24 record in singles play. The fall record had no effect on their play. The team started the season with a 2-0 record.
“I think the team and I are planning to go into the match the same way we did last weekend,” Martin said. “We have worked hard this week, so we can all go in confident with our strokes and strategy. If we trust ourselves and our game, then we should be very competitive this weekend.”
The women’s tennis team will travel to O’Fallon, Il. to compete against Saint Louis University. The Panthers will play their meet at the St. Claire’s Tennis Club on Sunday at 2:15 p.m.
This story was supposed to appear on the Daily Eastern News website on Friday, Jan. 25.
Blake Faith can be reached at 581-2812 or [email protected]